Dating violence no game, South Allegheny student assembly shows
The Bruno Mars song “Just the Way You Are” gets a thumbs up when it comes to describing a positive romantic relationship. That's not the case for the song “Tell Me Why” by Taylor Swift, which describes a physically abusive one.
The lyrical content of the two pop songs was brought into focus Wednesday during an afternoon assembly at South Allegheny High School, sponsored by the school's Expect Respect club.
The student group is committed to promoting positive behavior patterns in the community. It examined the two songs and other hits while presenting a “Jeopardy”-styled quiz featuring questions about dating behavior.
Other topics included things to do or not to do in a relationship, and dating violence statistics.
Students who participated in that, and another based on the game show “Family Feud,” guessed correctly that prohibiting a partner from seeing other people constitutes abusive behavior, and that offering a smile to someone is one way of paying respect.
Students watching the event from the audience appeared to be engaged by the assembly, which was part of the school's observance of Teen Dating Violence and Prevention Awareness Month.
Expect Respect member senior Nick Hawkins said the idea behind the game show format was to get the audience involved with the discussion of what constitutes good behavior toward others.
“We want people to be able to recognize signs of unhealthy relationships,” Hawkins said.
Student band Roll of the Dice kept the program rocking. Between the games, students showed a video shot at the high school in which students identified basic rights that those involved in relationships should expect from their partners.
Expect Respect is a program overseen by the Center for Victims based in McKeesport. South Allegheny is one of eight districts that participate.
Counselors from the center visit the high school weekly.
Dave Wingerson, one of the program's counselors, said such programs can make a difference in people's lives.
“Twenty years ago, domestic violence was something that was in the shadows,” he said. “Nowadays, people are more willing to speak up.”
Program counselor Brittany Elms said she believes it's not just students who benefit.
“There are teachers who have referred students to us,” she said.
Pam Fetch, a nurse at the high school, said the group's message of respect seems to be making a difference.
“The teachers have communicated that they see a difference,” Fetch said. “It's impacting South Allegheny in a positive way.”
Glassport Crime Watch coordinator Angelo Norelli said the group is reaching beyond the school district and into the community. Expect Respect members attend the anti-crime group's meetings and have been involved with the crime watch on special projects.
The student group and crime watch program presented housewares and personal items collected during a recent drive in the borough for Center for Victims.
Norelli said the Glassport Senior Citizens Center, Glassport Development Corp. and others in the community donated brooms, mops, diapers and other useful items.
The groups were recognized for the donation at the assembly.
Eric Slagle is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161 ext. 1966, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Power outage planned in Elizabeth, Forward
- Jamie’s Dream Team founder says she will press on despite new illness
- North Versailles Township approves $6.79 million budget that keeps tax rates flat
- McKeesport Area fourth-grader thrilled with gift from White Oak Lions Club
- Clairton students reference positive ‘Frozen’-themed lessons
- Elizabeth Forward marks 35th year of senior holiday breakfast
- Tax break extension bill has goodies for Mon-Yough area
- Businessman responds to Brewster shale tax proposal
- Teen who accused Clairton police of brutality pleads guilty to lesser charges
- Greensburg pit bull advocacy group plans fundraiser in Homestead
- Polka musician ‘Mr. December’ bringing his fiddle to McKeesport lodge